Building Integrated Photovoltaics
BIPV is related both to electric technology and construction technology covering energy, environmental, aesthetics, building energy performance, and multi-functionality of the building envelope.
Building integrated photovoltaics can be facades, roofs, windows, walls and many other things that is combined with photovoltaic material. BIPV can be seamlessly integrated with the rest of real estate property.
Several rules for the technology integration are already identified at international level. PV modules should effectively play the role of traditional building components, e.g. provide protection from weather and noise, or heat insulation, security, daylight control, and so on. It should guarantee the constructive functionality.
The aesthetic integration is also commonly discussed, as it is a critical point, often considered as an obstacle for the BIPV dissemination. In order to reach an architecturally pleasing composition, the PV modules should be in harmony with the total image of the building according colour, texture, size, position.
The energy integration is something essential to investigate as it refers to the PV interaction with the building and district energy system in order to maximize the local use of the produced electricity. The energy integration will become more and more important to cope with new ways to conceive the building, not as simple consumer anymore, but as a micro energy hub consuming, producing, storing and supplying energy into a bigger energy system.